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Canada Files Charges Related to SNC-Lavalin Probe

Canadian authorities have filed five charges against a former SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. executive in relation to a multiyear probe related to illegal political contributions tied to the global engineering company.

Canadian officials have filed charges against a former SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. executive related to illegal political fundraising.

OTTAWA—Canadian authorities said Thursday they have filed five charges against a former SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. SNCAF 1.10% executive in relation to a multiyear probe related to illegal political contributions tied to the global engineering company.

Under Canada’s elections laws, corporations are prohibited from making donations to political parties. The charges were filed at the Court of Quebec in Montreal, according to a statement issued by Canada’s Commissioner of Elections, and relate to an investigation involving SNC-Lavalin officials and their political fundraising activities between 2004 and 2011.

Charged is Normand Morin, who served as an executive vice president at the engineering company until his retirement in 2004. He also serves on the board of directors at Goodfellow Inc., a Canadian lumber company, and was re-elected in April to the board. Attempts to reach Mr. Morin in Montreal were unsuccessful. A representative for Canada’s federal prosecutors couldn't provide further information such as Mr. Morin’s age and address.

A representative for Goodfellow wasn’t immediately available for comment.

The charges against Mr. Morin allege, among other things, he knowingly tried to conceal and circumvent the source of political donations.

With the charges, the investigation into SNC-Lavalin officials has come to an end, the elections watchdog said.

In September 2016, SNC-Lavalin and the Canadian election watchdog entered into a so-called compliance agreement in which the firm acknowledged former employees made illegal contributions. Under such pacts, the federal agency and the party involved agree to terms and conditions to ensure political-financial laws are followed. At the time the agreement was reached, the election watchdog said its investigation would continue.

A spokesman for SNC-Lavalin said the company wouldn’t comment on criminal charges against former employees.

The company has been trying to work to clean up its image following a series of corruption allegations this decade. “It’s affected us less as time has gone on, but it’s still a reputational business,” Chief Executive Neil Bruce told Toronto-based The Globe and Mail in a story published in May.

The company also faces bribery and fraud charges, filed in 2015, stemming from its previous work in Libya. The company is contesting those charges.

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